Docusate sodium

Also Known As: Docusate sodium, Colace, Dioctyl, sodium sulfosuccinate, Dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate

Dioctyl sodium sulfosuccinate or docusate sodium (Colace) – often referred to as DSS, Aerosol OT or AOT – is a common ingredient in consumer products, especially laxatives of the stool softener type. It is also used as an emulsifying, wetting, and dispersing agent, as a pesticide, as well as a component of the oil dispersant Corexit which was used in the Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010. It is an anionic surfactant, a substance that lowers the surface tension of water.

Docusate calcium and docusate potassium, as well as other dioctyl sulfosuccinate salts, are also widely used in the same areas.

Docusate is used to make stools softer and easier to pass. It is used in symptomatic treatment of constipation, and in painful anorectal conditions such as hemorrhoids and anal fissures for people avoiding straining during bowel movements. Patients taking ducosate should drink plenty of water to irrigate the bowel, thereby increasing motility. Given orally, the effects are usually seen 1 to 3 days after the first dose.[5] Given rectally, as an enema or suppository, a bowel movement usually occurs within 5 to 20 minutes.[6]

The drug may be used in people who are undergoing opioid pain therapy, are opioid dependent, or on opioid replacement therapy.

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